Crime And Punishment Page-216

Crime And Punishment

again, and in utter confusion addressed Raskolnikov. “I... I... have come for one minute. Forgive me for disturbing you,” she began falteringly. “I come from Katerina Ivanovna, and she had no one to send. Katerina Ivanovna told me to beg you... to be at the service... in the morning... at Mitrofanievsky... and then... to us... to her... to do her the honour... she told me to beg you...” Sonia stammered and ceased speaking. “I will try, certainly, most certainly,” answered Raskolnikov. He, too, stood up, and he, too, faltered and could not finish his sentence. “Please sit down,” he said, suddenly. “I want to talk to you. You are perhaps in a hurry, but please, be so kind, spare me two minutes,” and he drew up a chair for her. Sonia sat down again, and again timidly she took a hurried, frightened look at the two ladies, and dropped her eyes. Raskolnikov’s pale face flushed, a shudder passed over him, his eyes glowed. “Mother,” he said, firmly and insistently, “this is Sofya Semyonovna Marmeladov, the daughter of that unfortunate Mr. Marmeladov, who was run over yesterday before my eyes, and of whom I was just telling you.” Pulcheria Alexandrovna glanced at Sonia, and slightly screwed up her eyes. In spite of her embarrassment before Rodya’s urgent and challenging look, she could not deny herself that satisfaction. Dounia gazed gravely and intently into the poor girl’s face, and scrutinised her with perplexity. Sonia, hearing herself introduced, tried to raise her eyes again, but was more embarrassed than ever. “I wanted to ask you,” said Raskolnikov, hastily, “how things were arranged yesterday. You were not worried by the police, for instance?” “No, that was all right... it was too evident, the cause of death... they did not worry us... only the lodgers are angry.” “Why?” “At the body’s remaining so long. You see it is hot now. So that, to-day, they will carry it to the cemetery, into the chapel, until to-morrow. At first Katerina Ivanovna was unwilling, but now she sees herself that it’s necessary...” “To-day, then?” “She begs you to do us the honour to be in the church to-morrow for the service, and then to be present at the funeral lunch.” “She is giving a funeral lunch?” “Yes... just a little.... She told me to thank you very much for helping us yesterday. But for you, we should have had nothing for the funeral.” All at once her lips and chin began trembling, but, with an effort, she